As many readers are aware, Logan was more than just another entry in the long-running X-Men franchise. It was Hugh Jackman’s final outing as the popular superhero Wolverine, with the actor having portrayed the role in eight films over the course of 17 years, excluding Logan. As a result, Logan was intended to do more than give Jackman a proper send-off; it was to mark an official end to the X-Men franchise’s humble beginnings when the comic book genre was just beginning to recover from the travesty of Batman & Robin.
As a result, Logan needed to do two things: deconstruct the genre it inhabited while also providing a degree of closure to strings left loose from before the semi-reboot Days of Future Past in 2014. When it came to the former task, Logan more than succeeded as it took a revisionist look at elements of the prior movies that audiences had taken for granted. First and foremost was the violence. With an R-rating, the creative team behind Logan was finally able to go full-out with the bloody action scenes reminiscent of the character’s actions in the comics, but it did so with a bleak acknowledgment. We had seen Logan slice at people before in previous entries, but now that fans actually saw the results of those attacks, it gave the film an almost surreal sense, as though it occupied a separate continuity than its prequels.
Next was the decision to expand upon the mythological aspect of the X-Men. While interpreting superheroes as contemporary myths has been tackled in other media like Unbreakable and Man of Steel, Logan took it a step further by going an almost meta route with the aspect via the inclusion of actual X-Men comic books. While specifically created for the movie, the comics nonetheless conveyed the sense that the adventures of the X-Men in the past films had gained metaphysical reverence in the eyes of the common man.
Unfortunately, when it came to the secondary task of providing closure, the film did not succeed as well as it could have. While the characters of Logan/Wolverine and Professor X were given appropriate finales, the other members of the esteemed team were blatantly ignored in order to give the backstory a sense of tragic mystery. The problem was director/writer James Mangold was so focused on making the narrative purely about Wolverine, that it resulted in many beloved members getting sidelined as each new draft of the script was written.
Whether or not this was ultimately a good decision remains open to every individual, but to those who were disappointed, a deleted scene from Logan may provide some satisfaction. During the later part of the movie, Laura/X-23 takes a wounded Logan to a hideout full of her fellow mutant refugees. The deleted scene occurs during his recovery there, wherein he wakes up to a kid named Bobby playing with Wolverine and Sabretooth action figures. Bobby then asks him whether Sabretooth was real or fake like most of the other events in the published comics, to which Logan confirms that he was not only real but also experimented on alongside himself.
Fans of the past movies will be aware of this little Easter Egg of sorts. Portrayed by Tyler Mane in the original X-Men and Liev Schreiber in 2009’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Sabretooth was, in the admittedly loose continuity of the movies, Wolverine’s half-brother who ends up betraying him, becoming a longtime enemy in the process. While Schreiber was originally considered to be a part of the film, he was ultimately written out in subsequent revisions of the screenplay.
Regardless, it is interesting to see that at least a small nod was tossed at the intact nature of Wolverine’s backstory and interactions.
[Featured Image by Kevin Winter/Getty Images]